Thursday, April 9, 2009

You can fly...

This morning as I ate my cold cereal, I chose to read a talk by Elder Neal A. Maxwell that was given to me by my mom this past weekend.

It is a beautiful message entitled The Women of God. You can read the entire article here. (please, go and read it! you will be so glad you did) It is overflowing with tender words and praise of women. I especially loved these passages:

God trusts women so much that He lets them bear and care for His spirit children.

In our modern kingdom, it is no accident that women were, through the Relief Society, assigned compassionate service. So often the service of women seems instinctive, while that of some men seems more labored. It is precisely because the daughters of Zion are so uncommon that the adversary will not leave them alone.

We salute you, sisters, for the joy that is yours as you rejoice in a baby’s first smile and as you listen with eager ear to a child’s first day at school which bespeaks a special selflessness. Women, more quickly than others, will understand the possible dangers when the word self is militantly placed before other words like fulfillment. You rock a sobbing child without wondering if today’s world is passing you by, because you know you hold tomorrow tightly in your arms.

So often our sisters comfort others when their own needs are greater than those being comforted. That quality is like the generosity of Jesus on the cross. Empathy during agony is a portion of divinity!

I thank the Father that His Only Begotten Son did not say in defiant protest at Calvary, “My body is my own!” I stand in admiration of women today who resist the fashion of abortion, by refusing to make the sacred womb a tomb!

When the real history of mankind is fully disclosed, will it feature the echoes of gunfire or the shaping sound of lullabies? The great armistices made by military men or the peacemaking of women in homes and in neighborhoods? Will what happened in cradles and kitchens prove to be more controlling than what happened in congresses? When the surf of the centuries has made the great pyramids so much sand, the everlasting family will still be standing, because it is a celestial institution, formed outside telestial time. The women of God know this.

No wonder the men of God support and sustain you sisters in your unique roles, for the act of deserting home in order to shape society is like thoughtlessly removing crucial fingers from an imperiled dike in order to teach people to swim.
We men love you for meeting inconsiderateness with consideration and selfishness with selflessness. We are touched by the eloquence of your example. We are deeply grateful for your enduring us as men when we are not at our best because—like God—you love us not only for what we are, but for what we have the power to become.

We have special admiration for the unsung but unsullied single women among whom are some of the noblest daughters of God. These sisters know that God loves them, individually and distinctly. They make wise career choices even though they cannot now have the most choice career. Though in their second estate they do not have their first desire, they still overcome the world. These sisters who cannot now enrich the institution of their own marriage so often enrich other institutions in society. They do not withhold their blessings simply because some blessings are now withheld from them. Their trust in God is like that of the wives who are childless, but not by choice, but who in the justice of God will receive special blessings one day.

As I read these tender words, eating my Marshmallow Mateys, tears coursing down my cheeks, feeling the love and support from an Apostle of Jesus Christ, little son came over to the table to join me. He climbed up and said, "Hi, Mom." And I stopped my reading to wipe my tears, respond to him and acknowledge his little presence.

As I looked back down to continue reading and eating, I noticed a black speck in my cereal. Upon further inspection, I realized it was a fly. A dead fly. Floating in my Mateys.

Kinda killed the spirit of the article.

I got up, poured the cereal down the drain, and began to blog.

Thanks a lot, little fly. But especially I am thankful little son came over to offer his mom a hello. Were it not for him, I may have a little dead fly floating in my tummy. And I probably would never have known it.

Now I'm off to finish reading that article.


Shannon said...

Thanks for the article, the reminder why we do what we do, and the laugh! I needed all three today.

Sarah said...

Hysterical. I love it when my most spiritual moments are interrupted by children. Good save, little son.

Ruth P said...

I had to chuckle at that pesky fly because we have a couple buzzing around our home. Thanks for the link. I can't wait to read the article. It is something, we as mothers and women, need to hear over and over again.

Courtney said...

Thank you!! I really needed this today! I know I dont have any kids but sometimes the hubby can feel like one...if ya know what I mean!
Anyhow...THANK YOU!!

Jae said...

So happy to hear you're still a fan of Marshmallow Mateys! As I am...and I've converted my 3 boys as well.

When can we meet up at Women's Conf?

Nathan said...

Isn't that always the way? Life just interrupts everything. I think the trick is to enjoy those moments in between interruptions rather than get frustrated.

Deep thoughts by Nathan.

Tink said...

I so miss Elder Maxwell and his wonderful tidbits of wisdom! Thanks for sharing this and reminding me what a wonder and joy it is to be a mother! I enjoyed the relaxing music playing on your blog!

Marisa said...

Elder Maxwell was THE man! He was my favorite speaker. So incredibly talented in the way he spoke and wrote! I miss him! I need to go find more of his books and talks.

Mechelle said...

I'm glad you didn't swollow the fly! and thanks for sharing the article, it's a wonderful reminder for me to keep my chin up, be patient, and love unconditionally.

the fly thing reminded me of the story of the old woman who swallowed a fly "I don't know why she swallowed a fly, perhaps she'll die"

but you didn't swallow the fly so you won't die, thank goodness, cause those fly's are really dangerous when you swallow them!

Anonymous said...

great article... grody about the fly :P

wonder woman said...

Thanks for posting the article. I love Elder Maxwell. I saw a quote book of his in Deseret Book that I desperately wanted. If I had an extra FIFTY BUCKS, I would've bought it.

And......I have tears in my eyes. I'm not sure if they came during the talk, or the "Hi, Mom," or the DEAD FLY. That's hilarious! And disgusting!! I'm glad your child stopped you from ingesting the dead insect. YUCK.

I'm also glad you've got a good husband you let you sleep while he took over for a bit. I've had those days, too.